2021 #TravelGoals: India has much to offer
Six week road trip planned across India: Papa CJ
“The pandemic has made me realise what an important part of my life travelling is. I’ve already planned a six week road trip across India. I’ll be starting from Delhi, going down the West Coast all the way to Coorg (Karnataka), driving across to Puducherry, then up the East Coast to Kolkata and then back to Delhi. I don’t have fixed days of stay planned for any place. I’m going to play it by ear depending on how much I’m enjoying each place,” says the comedian.
He adds, “I believe tourism is one of the most untapped sectors of our economy. We have a beautiful country that has much to offer. History, geography, culture, food — there is so much to be enjoyed and celebrated. We need to do a far better job of looking after our heritage, keeping it clean, building the right infrastructure and processes around it and marketing it.
Want to visit the Golden Temple: Sonam Kalra
“The pandemic changed the way everyone travels. People are more afraid so fewer people are travelling. It has also become more tedious and restrictive given all the precautions one has to take and can get quite suffocating for people on long haul flights. That being said, people are wanting and waiting to travel as soon as things get better and they start to feel less at risk of contracting Covid,” says the singer-composer.
Kalra says, “So much of my travel is linked to my concerts and performances, and fortunately since things opened up a bit I’ve travelled a little on work. To be honest, I’ve no problem with not travelling abroad, and we have so many beautiful places within our country that given a choice I would definitely travel within India. I would like to go to Harmandir Sahab (The Golden Temple) in Amritsar, as it’s a very special place for me. And go to Goa to sit by the beach and soak in some sun!”
“India has so many beautiful, unexplored destinations from Kutch in the west to Kalimpong in the east, and Kalap in the north to Kannur in the south — all just waiting to be explored! Also, across India there are so many incredible properties, hotels and resorts that have come up over the last few years, which are destinations in themselves, which would make for some great travel choices,” she adds.
Hope to see Sunderbans: Manju Kapur
“I travel regularly and extensively, and have been to many places both in India and abroad. When the pandemic-induced lockdown was announced, I was in Zurich (Switzerland) and had to stay put for months before making my way back to India via a Vande Bharat flight. After all the hassles, sudden insurance arrangements and visa plans, once I was home I could finally relax. Coronavirus pandemic has certainly put us on guard; what was once casual, is now cumbersome,” says the author.
She adds, “But there is a feeling of familiarity and belonging that I feel in India. This country has so much to offer, and I believe we need to keep our country clean. It’s heartbreaking to see people littering everywhere! Nevertheless, if I could recommend places to people to see, I’d ask them to see Udaipur because it’s beautiful and culturally rich. I hope to see Sunderbans once things are better; right now I’m staying put and happy to not leave my house!”
Get over destination selfie syndrome: Samar Singh Jodha
“My work makes me be on the road for almost 300 days each year. But, the pandemic has been about mindfulness, looking inwards. We need to get over our destination selfie syndrome and be travellers, and not just tourists in our own country, which is waiting to be explored! We can all choose to explore places around us while maintaining safety. As an avid traveller, I would like to see, and even recommend people to see the Northeast (India). From a vibrant culture to music festivals, there is something for everyone,” says the photographer-artist.
Author tweets @bhagat_mallika